My 14 month old is banging his head on the floor!

Steph - posted on 08/09/2009 ( 20 moms have responded )

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He does this ON PURPOSE and will actually crawl off the rug and over to the hardwood or kitchen floor to prove his point. I know it hurts him because he cries afterward, you'd think that would stop him but he doesn't care that it hurts. Now he's getting bruises on his forehead from this!! How can I stop my 14 month old from banging his head on the floor? How can I help him find another way to express his anger?

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Stacey - posted on 08/12/2009

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You should talk to you're doctor about a sensory disorder or autism. Hitting their head in the forehead area gives the brain seritonin. Kids with sensory issue do this a lot

Rachelle - posted on 04/14/2012

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My son did this a lot when he was you ger brought him to the doctor and there was nothing wrong with him. It's just a tantrum, my son had bruises too and he cried but the doctor said they will stop before they cause damage to themselves. After seeing 3 dr's that told me to make sure he won't cut his head on anything and ignore it that's exactly what I did. Three weeks after I started ignoring him he stopped hitting his head and instead started fallowing me around and screaming. You could try using other phrases than the word no sometimes that helped my son as well. For example if he wanted a cookie but it was breakfast time I would say not know maybe after lunch and that would prevent the tantrums.

Sue - posted on 08/12/2009

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Are you able to stop your 14 month old from banging his head on the floor by a loud startling noise such as clapping, etc.... It doesn't mean that you give him attention, just trying to interrupt the behavior taking place..once it stops then give him attention...another option, without saying a word and no recognition of him ,scoup him up from the floor...move him to another room out of sight from everyone, put him down and walk away...if he follows repeat..eventually he will tire and stop

Atania - posted on 08/12/2009

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My 1 year does this too.... I just leave him alone with his own tantrum. But I feel like a bad parent letting hurt himself. How do you stop this?

Carol - posted on 10/30/2011

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Let your doctor know. It could be out of frustration or just a sensory issue. But the doctor needs to know. If he is anxious he could be doing it as a release, but distraction would help.

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Betsy - posted on 10/30/2011

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Have a pillow handy, and just slide it under his head whenever you see this reaction coming. But, most importantly, try to reduce the frustration as best you can before this happens.

Kristin - posted on 08/11/2009

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I would LOVE to know how to deal with this too! My son throws himself on his back and hits his head that way.

Deborah - posted on 08/09/2009

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This isnt just a boy thing. My daughter did this as did my cousins daughter. My cousin had a theory that they believe they are hurting you by hurting themselves. much the same way as when they cover their eyes they believe that you cant see them! Dont worry about your 14 month old banging his head on the floor, it will pass and hopefully without any brain damage! Good luck.

Kim - posted on 08/09/2009

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My son who is now 3 yrs old used to do this daily. The minute he got told no or didn't get what he wanted he would find a hard floor or a door to bang his head off of. The one day he did it for an hour straight. I was so worried that there was something wrong with him or that he was going to cause serious injury to himself that I called the pediatrician. My pediatrician reassured me that he was just trying to get his way and if I ignored him he would eventually stop it. He suggested that when he would start to bang his head on a hard surface to simply move him to the carpet. My son would even crawl back to the hard surface crying and then start banging his head again, but I would just move him to the carpet. Eventually he got tired of it because he still wasn't getting what he wanted and stopped the behavior.

Toni - posted on 08/09/2009

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Don't just ignore it when your 14 month old is banging his head on the floor, find or make a safe place for him to throw his fit...preferably one that isn't all that pleasant and won't interfere with anyone else's activities. Put him there and let him know that this is a punishment for his fits. Shunning and isolation work effectively and since he can't get hurt in the safe place the guilt you'll feel is only passing and he won't have as many bruises.

Sharon - posted on 08/09/2009

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I mentioned it before, mine used to drop like a stone to the floor but apparently even the carpet was to hard and he started running to my dirty laundry area to scream and cry. I've got pictures to black mail him with later, lol.

Krista - posted on 08/09/2009

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My son does it......but not to hurt himself. He usually does it on soft surfaces. He expresses his anger in screams. So, instead of hurting himself, he's hurting my ear drums. :(

Sharon - posted on 08/09/2009

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huh that is interesting, Steph, Fallon, Me, Rhonda - all describing toddler boys who did this......

Krista - posted on 08/09/2009

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Funny little fact about kids....they bang their heads as a way to soothe themselves. This happens more with boys than with girls. If you're worried, just put him in his highchair and let him bang his head off the back until it subsides. And more than likely, he's crying AS a point. As if to say, "Look Mommy! It hurts! Pay attention!". As hard as it may seem, stop paying attention to it and it will pass.

Rhonda - posted on 08/09/2009

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Whenever my son (now 11) did that as a toddler, I'd walk past him and laugh and then went on about my business, he eventually realized that he wasnt gonna get his way and he was only hurting himself. Even when he'd cry from banging his head on the floor I wouldnt console him, cuz if I did it was a way for him to get attention (the wrong way to get it). I'd just tell him to keep doing it, it's your head thats gonna get a boo boo not mine and then I'd leave him alone.....after numerous of times, he finally stopped.

Sharon - posted on 08/09/2009

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When you pick him up to comfort him from the pain - you're giving him what he wants.



Sometimes I wonder if these kids are the same ones that grow up to cut themselves? They inflicted pain on themselves and got comfort. Its a rather nebulous wondering with no real substance, but its curious where the putting yourself in pain and getting comfort from it comes from.

[deleted account]

Good luck! At this age saying 'use your words' isn't going to help...One thing that's great about kids around this age they change so fast..that this behavior may be gone next week..once he figures out it doesn't do any good..I hope so..and I hope the same for my naughty little one..

Sharon - posted on 08/09/2009

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yep. I agree with Fallon. Ignore it when your 14 month old is banging his head on the floor. Babies have been throwing tantrums this way for ever so long and I've never heard of a baby giving themselves a concussion this way.

Steph - posted on 08/09/2009

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i don't EVER give him something if i said no, i do pick him up and comfort him after he's banged his head and is now crying about it but only to comfort not to give him what he wants. i have no problem standing firm with the discipline i just want him to find a less painful outlet for his frustration at the "no's".

[deleted account]

Ignore this behavior! and if he's mad about something he's been told no about absolutly do not give in..it's hard but I really think if you start giving in when he acts out like this you might be in trouble down the road with worse behavior...my 2 year old is a testament to this fact..we've just tried to keep him quiet..he screams LOUDLY when he doesn't get his way..and has been doing this since he was about 1..the fact that his older brother and sister give in to him hasn't helped either..and now I have a very loud short little bully on my hands..and no way to turn back the clock and explain to the older kids that he can't get his way by screaming...now what?

Deborah - posted on 08/09/2009

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This isnt just a boy thing. My daughter did this as did my cousins daughter. My cousin had a theory that they believe they are hurting you by hurting themselves. much the same way as when they cover their eyes they believe that you cant see them! Dont worry about your 14 month old banging his head on the floor, it will pass and hopefully without any brain damage! Good luck.

Toni - posted on 08/09/2009

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Don't just ignore it when your 14 month old is banging his head on the floor, find or make a safe place for him to throw his fit...preferably one that isn't all that pleasant and won't interfere with anyone else's activities. Put him there and let him know that this is a punishment for his fits. Shunning and isolation work effectively and since he can't get hurt in the safe place the guilt you'll feel is only passing and he won't have as many bruises.

Sharon - posted on 08/09/2009

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yep. I agree with Fallon. Ignore it when your 14 month old is banging his head on the floor. Babies have been throwing tantrums this way for ever so long and I've never heard of a baby giving themselves a concussion this way.

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